UPDATE!!!!! Want to let you all know that right now (11/20/2022) You can order the new 50th anniversary Mego Superheroes from Movie Posters Etc NOW! I know I stressed the “retail experience” and I do hope to do that BUT more importantly I want what I want and I also would MUCH RATHER see a small business benefit from your purchase. Check ’em out and Collect ‘Em All!
Jim’s note: This post will be updated throughout the day. Check back or refresh the page often.
Introduction: Why it all matters to me. They’re just dolls for God sake. But not really. They’re a life long source of inspiration, entertainment and joy for nearly 50 years. And now we’ve come to a bookend.
Preface/ prelude 11/05/2022: the discovery.
HAPPY MEGO DAY? 11/06/2022
5:50 am: up and at em! Fall back in full effect. Feel pretty good with the “extra” hour of sleep I got. Now for the morning chores with the cats and dogs. Then off to work.
7:11 am: popped into the home base Walmart. Nothing as expected but tried anyway. Now on to work… best word for today: Anticipation!
7:46 am: thinking about it all (which is always my thing anyway), how to make a game of it beyond the silliness of it all, my mind is pondering using these 50th anniversary figures as a reward system. Trade the treat for a bad or non existent habit I want to break or create. In essence treating myself like a kid who needs to finish his vegetables before desert . So silly. Time to do the day job… bet your bippity that my mind will be filled with ideas for the blogs and podcasts to come inspired by this new hunt.
8:35 am: in regards to last point… work tasks are getting done quicker. So much for the passage of time being manipulated by distraction. I
10:25 am: I truly enjoy and appreciate my day job… but man oh man would I like to be able to check those pegs right now! Not completely obsessed as much as I want to see this happen.
But regardless of the days final results… my heart will go on. Just like Celine sang 😉
The trick is to just focus on the workday stuff. I swear, these posts come at times that are ethical. No slacking here from this fanboy.
1:34 pm: Lunch time but not enough time to run across town. AKA adult problems. “Just call or order online.” How about no. This about the retail experience and showing support at the register for the company. More on all of that later.
2:01 pm: Could it be any slower? As Johnny Cash so intensely sang; “Tome keeps dragging on.” Now, while I’m not stuck in a prison, the clock is certainly an annoying warden at the moment.
3:33 pm: just found out I have dinner plans right after I get off sooooooo…. I broke and called the store. The young man was nice but had no clue even after looking. The tension builds like a Willie Wonka meme.
4:42 pm: So close to quitting time but the dinner plans have taken precedence. Grrrrrr…. But the biggest reveal so fat is how much I’m getting a kick out of these timeline updates. Something to this form of storytelling 🙂
5:07 pm: dinner party is still waiting for the table sooooo….. update shortly. 🙂
5:28 pm: Nevermind . Family first. 🙂
7 pm: Almost done with dinner. Anticipation slightly muted by post pasta grogginess. Honestly though, I’m not feeling that the final stop is going to turn out with a happy ending.
7:59 pm: It appears to be a bust. But I ain’t going without some digging…
8:18 pm: Learning new things. While the system shows that the figures will be here, when is actually an uncertainty.
“not in transit”
So in at the end of the day the anticipation was left unfulfilled, but most certainly not a waste of day or unbearable disappointment. Watch this space for more on this “Happy Mego Day” that wasn’t plus the podcast that will talk more about the true significance of all of this silliness.
Now, go play!
P.S. Not a total bust at the CCP Superstore. Found this fun little star of the FNAF universe from Funko for Freddy’s biggest fan. We call her Kaitlynn. 🙂
Can we talk to the dead? Well of course! We’ve got A.I!
Shadowy figures in the corner of your eye. Bumps in the night. The feeling of a strange yet familiar presence watching you from behind. Those all were the elements of a good ghost story and a way to freak yourself out yet at the same time encourage you to go a little deeper into the darkness. But you know what? I’ve learned of something far more terrifying as far as I’m concerned: Digital Ghosts.
Let me define that: A “Digital Ghost” is a new A.I. Powered chat-bot of sorts that takes, compiles and processes real conversations (text, recordings etc) thus creating an algorithm that will allow a person to carry on a conversation with someone that has long since shook loose the mortal coil. I truly wish I was making this up but I’m not. You can read the root article that introduced me to this EXISTING technology. Not hypothetical, not “in theory” but honest to goodness working models available to the public NOW. While I’m bringing attention to it, I am in NO WAY endorsing this for a trial run. If anything, I’d encourage you to run like hell from it. Here’s why.
For as long as I have been on this planet, I have enjoyed a good ghost story. Not the fictional ones but the ones that come from eyewitness accounts of paranormal activity experienced and or captured by real people, some I knew personally in the flesh, and others I watched on television or heard on the radio, I’ll classify all of these as “urban legends”. Some of the tales were quite convincing while others were obviously the haunted musings of people who were mentally / emotionally disturbed or flat out lying for the sake of attention. I speak to this with some “authority” having conducted numerous paranormal investigations as well as personal experiences and experiments. This isn’t the place where I want to go deep and wide into recounting those tales but merely to establish to you dear reader that I am not coming at this from a place of casual observation and hyperbole. I’ve literally been there, done that and have an old television show to prove it.
In regards to those those aforementioned experiences, I’d like ot break down my general observations from those categories I listed and as we go you’ll see why this “Digital Ghost” is a real problem:
First hand accounts: These are my favorites and this category is reserved exclusively for those that I have been in the same room with, looking eyeball to eyeball or experienced myself. Pretty rare on the whole and as a rarity, as good as gold.
Urban Legends: These are the second and third hand accounts of stories that have been passed down from generation to generation, shared around campfires and regurgitated endlessly on television and radio since those technologies have existed. I’m not saying that those tales aren’t true or at least based in some forms of truth. I am however saying that unless I experience something first hand, it will always be more suspect than anything else. Especially in this technological age.
The mentally Ill: I’ll start this by emphasizing that this category is not one that is singling out those who have mental disorders on the whole. What I mean here are those that are however lacking certain cognitive and abilities of discernment that doesn’t allow them to add broader critical thinking to their observations. These are the folks who truly can’t go deeper and wider into their lines of thoughts and comprehensions. These are also the ones who refuse to do so, meaning; they believe what they believe and there is absolutely no changing their minds. That to me is perfectly fine too. It’s their imagination being used as they see fit. Whatever gets you through this human experience is nothing I care to lay judgement on. Plus, in most cases of these types, I have observed that in at the root motivation of their stories these tales are helping them come to terms with either the unfortunate passing of a loved one or same said scenario but they themselves were horrible to someone that they can never make amends with and this is a way for them to bring about some form of inner peace to that mental struggle. That point is where that line gets crossed and people can and do get hurt and that I have a MASSIVE problem with. That leads us to our next category…
The Liars: This category is full of a whole lot of people. Many of them you probably know their names in the popular culture space of the paranormal genre. I have no need nor desire to offer up a blanket list of those that I believe to be full of shit and intentionally misguiding people. Just remember this little point of discerning: Examine the motivations behind not the claims but instead the rewards for telling of the tales. Are they getting paid to do so? Are they charging you to tell you something? Are they screaming for attention in their efforts? What is the root motivation? If theirs a paycheck or a pat on the back, enjoy the show but know they are more than likely pulling your leg and at your wallet. Don’t invite ’em over for dinner.
Now before we get into why I see the Digital Ghosts software’s as a problem let me better define my perception on the purpose and point of ghost stories, experiences and the need to share them and why they either freak us out or encourage us with hope of more after this life fades away. Even more than religion, most of us NEED ghosts to help us deal with death.
No matter what your race, religion, sex, nationality etc is, the reality is that death is the absolute equalizer and one thing that everyone will experience. If you are or know of a living organism, you and it is eventually going to stop being one. And overall it is going to be a horrible experience to endure. Even if you have found your peace with death on the whole, there will still be those moments of sadness that stems from the loss of connecting with that unique spirit in the manners in which you had before. You can talk out loud at an empty chair over your lonely morning coffee and may even feel a connection as if the person you are addressing is there, but there is no denying that their physical presence isn’t. And that sucks. However, you do have the memories of those times and conversations. You may even have pictures and videos of those moments that take your mental reflections into 2 Dimensional space. You of course can share a problem with that memory and deduce a hypothetical answer and it help. Now it’s at this point where the Digital Ghosts become problematic.
Let’s say that someone you know used one of these A.I. powered services or someone they knew took all of that data and content and submitted it to the service providers and they did what they do in their 21st century Dr. Frankenstein meets Physic Gypsy caravan cart, laboratory and social platform. With the link you can start a conversation with “Good Ole Joe’s” chatbot. You know it’s a chat-bot so you’re cool. “It’s just a game, right?” Of course. Liek a Ouija board… but with an absolute vision and established personality that you not only know of but knew intimately for a good portion of your life. Here is where it starts to slide down the slope into the danger zone…
As you’re “playing” with the app, you’re simple statements of “I sure do miss you.” and “I could really use your thoughts on this matter.” shift from what your theater of the mind might cook up to actual words on the screen, presented in tone and stye exactly as “Good ole Joe” would have replied.
“I text dead people!”
Here’s the problem and I’ll prove it by how we live today thanks to social media. Going into the app you KNOW it’s an app. No doubt. Good Ole Joe is long gone. But the text replies seem so “right” to what he would say. That’s you’re mind accessing your brain to discern that, and as the conversation goes on (“One more question won’t hurt. Hell, this is therapeutic! I’m getting it out and letting go!”), the line begins to get thinner and thinner between reality and technologically powered perception thus a new reality. Your mind and brain are starting to process this as a real conversation because the more emotions that are drummed up the more real it truly becomes in the physical sensations. You also start receiving the satisfaction and treat that is the combination of dopamine and adrenaline. It’s really driving this experience out of the “Twilight Zone” and into the cache of messaging contacts on the phone in your pocket. “How awesome and convenient is this?!? Good Ole Joe will always be right here with me when I need his sage like advice that is actually getting wiser and more insightful all the time! Thank you A.I! You filled the void in my heart!”
No it didn’t. In fact, this outreach and interaction is doing what social media has established as a blurring of the lines of reality in human connections and interactions. Did you forget that the window into the lives of your “friends” are limited by what they themselves gate keep? There’s your reminder if you did. Those interactions have aspects of reality to them, but in the end ARE NOT REAL. NEVER forget that. They are 2 dimensional experiences that have a REAL impact on your emotional, mental and physical well being. Take a moment and reflect on any of the social media drama you found yourself in over the past decade+ that you’ve been on social media. The only thing that was truly impacted by that drama was how you lived your REAL LIFE in the REAL WORLD. That was a simulated distraction that created a real world burnt roast in the oven or missed meeting because time got away. I feel confident that you see my point so let’s examine how this reality of social medias impact on your everyday life will be further damaged by a more personal experience when you have the opportunity to have a fresh conversation with Good Ole but long dead Joe.
Social media feels real to you. Although its not. It does have real ramifications in some instances, but more often than not, it doesn’t… except of course to your mind. Your consciousness and sub conscious are being put through the paces of staying on top of discerning and judging what to do with all the info you are putting into it.
My mind is racing now with all the possibilities that could arise from this. With the right amount of data, you could feasibly have this A.I. crate a version of “grandma” that you could then introduce to your friends who are needing a little bit of grandmotherly guidance like she gave you. We can even go a little further and recreate historical figures, both real and fictional. Simply scan in writings or documents written by the likes of George Washington and Ben Franklin or Captain Ahab and Professor Moriarty from Sherlock Holmes infamy. Sweet lord we just transitioned into “Star Trek: The Next Generation” holo-deck territory. Well damn, didn’t see that coming but it does lead to my next points
So in first addressing only the text aspect of this technology when you add in the visual and audio options that are absolutely do-able now, and you have a real opportunity to create an “avatar” that is pretty damn life like in their appearance and sound. The list of psychosis that can develop from this point should be coming clearer to you now, dear reader. I’d be remiss not to mention the other sensory gadgets and gear that has been announced from folks like Zuckerburg and Google to where you will be able to physically FEEL things that aren’t there. I don’t think Rod Serling himself could have dreamed this reality up in his Twilight Zone Night Gallery. Then again, maybe he could have or could now. All we gotta do is load in some pics, video and data and find out.
Now tell me that ain’t spookier than a creak you heard on the stairs.
Back on point with my legitimate concerns in regards to the human mind and spirituality. Secularism is a real concern of mine these days. While I am all about “You do you, I’m not here to judge.” I am concerned with the ever growing acceptance of a one and done, we’re nothing more than a random accident in the universe that serves no purpose outside of living and dying and all along that journey adding our sweat equity of mental and physical labors for the sake of the rest and future society “just ‘cuz”. That’s ludicrous to me and as a matter of fact the older I get the more I realize not only how horrible that perspective is but also how incredibly EVIL it is as well. If we were only born to die than what is the purpose in putting up with so much bullshit and pain while living? I haven’t found a suitable answer to that and if you have, keep it to yourself.
A couple final links and thoughts about all of this for you yourself to check out to see where I’m coming from in all of this. The first is an A.I. created podcast between Joe Rogan and Steve Jobs. Admittedly it is weak to the educated ear HOWEVER it’s not so weak to an unsuspecting mind or one not aware of this technology which is in far greater numbers than you insightful one may realize. Click here for that. Next is the Pocket article I read this morning that inspired me to write this article. In it you ill find links and further notes and studies that are being done RIGHT NOW. Finally, at the bottom of the page is pretty interesting primer video that gives some good representations and examples of A.I, deep fakes and other such altered reality things that exist now and have been deployed on unsuspecting masses of people around the world. And for fun, I’ve also embedded a video from the ABBA experience show where the fabulous foursome have recreated and regenerated their younger selves to the thrills and chills of the modern audience. Entertaining and super scary when you take my words to heart. Then again, How cool could it be to see A.I. powered performances of Beethoven and Mozart?
Never mind. I ain’t giving in.
For the record, as of this writing (10/14/2022) I myself am still a living breathing human being cognitively jotting down these thoughts and considerations. You might want to double check that come 2073 if this is when you’ve come across this post. I may still be alive when you reach out but then again, I may not. Either way…
I became aware of the thought and reality of “problem/ reaction/ solution (PRS)” from David Icke. This simple three word equation is quite profound really. I gauge it’s profundity by the fact it is so simple and obvious once you think about it. It is even easier once you take the time once you’ve addressed the PRS to look at it’s prequel. That prequel is where we discover the root of the matter I term as “The Fuse”.
“The Fuse: Spotlighting the Prequel to a Problem, Reaction, Solution Scenario”
I became aware of the thought and reality of “problem/ reaction/ solution (PRS)” from David Icke. This simple three word equation is quite profound really. I gauge it’s profundity by the fact it is so simple and obvious once you think about it. It is even easier once you take the time once you’ve addressed the PRS to look at it’s prequel. That prequel is where we discover the root of the matter I term as “The Fuse”. Example:
Problem: “(Insert whichever ethnic, religious, sexual orientation of person), ruined/ attacked/ destroyed our way of life!”
Reaction: Become fearful, angry and hateful of (Insert whichever ethnic, religious, sexual orientation of person)
Solution: Shun (Insert whichever ethnic, religious, sexual orientation of person) and demonize them for “the greater good”.
The Prequel: Special interest lobbyists decided they needed to advance a particular thing to add to their wealth and power so they worked with easily manipulated and corrupted government officials to make changes to the existing system not for the greater good but instead for those personal ambitions. How is it done? Through writing, producing, directing and distributing a narrative that will get people emotionally charged over time that will in term lead both “sides” to be programmed to carry out and perform record-able actions that can then be used to “prove” how their solution is the ONLY one.
In thinking about all of this, I’ve dubbed this prequel step as “The Fuse” because without a fuse the “bomb” can’t go off. And to define and defuse that point where true progress, change and dare I say enlightenment can actually come to life. What I found even more profound in all of this line of thought is that when you examine pretty much any situation you will find at its start that the true solution is very simple, so long as you can address the reality that it stems from societal programming that is ingrained to the point that it seems to be a deep seeded belief based on a “right” when in fact it is a bastardization of a principle of natural law.
In this discussion I see natural law as a belief that is based in two factors: survival and love. Perhaps it would be best to swap those around as love and survival in its order of importance but the reality of perceived need places them in the aforementioned order.
As living, thinking, feeling organisms. we all have to survive. It’s a must if we are going to continue on our plights and journeys through this thing we call life. The problem there however is that the survival instinct can (and often does) reflect in a negative manner if LOVE is not placed first in the order. Without love in the drivers seat, we loose sight and connection with faith and hope. And without those two the experience of being human gets muddy and depressing and can be overcome by a negative energy. This is where my mind goes to a HUGE point that Jesus made in regards to his two commandments for the human race: Above all put God first and secondly, love your neighbor as yourself.
Side track thought: It just struck me how many of the modern “liberals” will take the second commandment and run with it as a tool to be used to instill guilt. That my friends is hypocrisy at its finest. But stepping back, once you realize that with the lack of the first commandment, and the programming of a narrative that says God’s dead or doesn’t exist, it’s easy to see how this happens in regards to the negative outcome of their actions.
With all that said I’d like to share my understanding and point of view on the first commandment aspect that is putting God above all.
Over the decades and years I have finally come to understand, believe and embrace the reality that in that commandment when truly accepted, embraced and applied, we learn the most important lesson of living a full life in this experience: There IS something far greater than ourselves. A “something” that has at its very core the ability to exist free from biased emotions. To see everything, and I mean EVERYTHING simply as “It is”. Completely free from good or bad but instead a perfect balance of what WE as humans perceive as “good or bad”. Perspective is everything and that perspective is the one thing that as humans we have a hard time getting past because by the very nature of this human experience, we can’t without lots of effort at the start, to comprehend and accept this completely neutral yet extremely powerful point of view.
With all of that said, I offer to you my perception to the PRS example and fuse that I started this article out with.
The Real Solution: Before you get enraged by this narrative of a particular (Insert whichever ethnic, religious, sexual orientation of person), seek out for yourself a PERSON that fits into that label. Have a cup of coffee with them or do anything for that matter that can allow for a conversation to come about. Ask them how they feel about that PRS. DO they believe it? Is it true? Why or Why not? Share your opinion and perception of said PRS. How do those two perspectives line up? While I wouldn’t be so arrogant to say that you will find an absolute answer, I will say that you will have invited a conversation and possible debate between two PEOPLE that can and will encourage free thought, debate and an EDUCATED ground for further growth, progress and potential resolution.
Applying this line of thought to my appreciation and dedication to PublicSq’s mission and platform.
With times as they are, and how we have arrived at this point, I would like to put myself to this test and standard. So here goes:
The Problem: Media and Government “suggestions”, protocols and narratives have led to businesses (both small and large) having to fall in line with methodologies that violate their core values
The Reaction: Many if not most fell in line dies to FEAR of being “cancelled” or shamed out of existence due to their “lack of compassion”.
The Solution: Accept said “Suggestions”, protocols and narratives as the “only way” they can survive this particular moment in time.
Now let’s take a look at “The Fuse” that led to that:
*Another note about the term “the fuse”. I chose the word fuse over trigger as a fuse works slower than a trigger. That’s not to discount that there are fast burning fuses, but at the same time, it still takes longer for a fuse to burn than a trigger and its reaction to action is far quicker. *
The Fuse of this scenario is one that was cultivated and nurtured over time. I’d say that at the start of this particular fuse would be the birth of “political correctness” which in itself gave birth to the “everybody’s a victim mentality that offered an excuse for a lack of personal responsibility. I’d pinpoint this start to the very early 90’s. It was from this point that the snowball started rolling faster and faster to where we are today. In it’s face, the arguments for complying with politically correct compliance was seen by most as little more than a general nuisance and not taken too seriously. There in lies the problem. Seeing the perceived gnat as just a little thing to wave away from your ear was actually a giant vulture in disguise and as time went on, the cloaking mechanism could no longer disguise its true nature.
Now, where does my affiliation to PublicSq come into play here?
It comes from the aforementioned understanding of things. With what the platform and its creators are offering is a platform that steps back to a time before the gnat got out of hand. I also fully understand that to take such a firm stand is far from easy to maintain. To succeed in their mission which I now embrace as my own, the vultures are waiting in these early days of the platforms growth, just waiting to strike. Before the strike however, there are constant giant swarms of gnats all around. Some of those giant swarms include the entities found in today’s existing social media landscape. To share the message on those platforms you can bet your bottom dollar that “shadow banning” is in place hard and the programmed trolls are out in full force to report, attack and attempt to discredit or “cancel” ones efforts in promoting this platform, it’s values and mission. In essence this a fight featuring an underdog and that has always been my favorite fight.
However, I firmly believe that this underdog has far more support than perceived because of what it offers the “silent majority”.
Silent only because the microphone is being controlled by the opposition. And they are Legion. However, the little engine that could, the tortoise that beat the hare and the handful of renegade colonists taking on an Empire prove that not only are the fights worth it, the outcomes can be better for all once the dust settles. And that’s where PublicSq comes in to play for me. They made the platform with the tech that is a functioning (and fashionable) answer to part of the problems for those who feel alone and thus afraid to speak up.
With all that said, and being mindful of the clock and my schedule, I have to conclude this writing. But rest assured, this thought on “The Fuse” will most certainly be continued in the days, weeks, months and years. But remember, regardless of the heaviness of your day and duties, take the time to enjoy living. After all, that’s what we’re here for.
Authors Note: This post is the accompaniment to this PODCAST
I want you to think about this. Let’s say you woke up and it was January 12th, 2019. The events of the past two+ years, haven’t occurred. What would be different for you?
That’s the question I’m posing to myself and challenging you with on this episode of the podcast.
Quick housekeeping notes: the name change and the theme song. Also, shop or drop a tip. It’s appreciated. If you’d like to hire me for consulting or production services reach me at email@example.com
For me I was burned out but still searching for hope. But, I did get sick with a sinus infection that impacted the right side of my head. My ear and jaw were in excruciating pain for days. So much so the best I could do for it was sleep. So I did. Little did I realize I was getting rested up for what was to come for a new adventure and change of scenery where I ended up selling big boy clothes. More on that later….
For a decade I was screaming from the rooftops about the NEED to support your local media. In fairness, they needed to be supporting you too with useful information and entertainment.
I went down many a wrong paths not out of direct and intentional malice but worse: indifference. By 2019 I had done enough and seen enough that I allowed my cynicism to overtake my positivity and in many cases common sense.
So now what? For two years I’ve been in an endless circle of self doubt and intentionally searching for a way out of that but doing it all wrong. I was aware of myself and actions but not as clear in my purpose. I was overthinking and complicating it all.
Moral of the story: When things seem impossible and at their worst NOW go back in your mind to a time you feel things were “better, good, great “ etc, and ask yourself “What was different then?” “What did I do or not do since?” “What’s the regrets?” “How can I right the ship NOW?”
The biggest take away? Do not wait for anything on your “bucket list”… get on it NOW!
Now, Go Play!
Jim – 01/12/2019 —- excuse me 07/26/2022
P.S. I’m working for in house merchandise creations, tips and affiliate sales… so clicks and a drop in the hat are always appreciated
Had our first unexplained power outage yesterday. It started at 6am and miraculously kicked back on at exactly 11 am. No useful information from the energy company via phone or app and no service trucks to be seen. In any case, it wasn’t a fun feeling. It did however inspire this post because preparedness is always crucial and critical.
Many industry analysts are saying people should expect to see more black and brown outs this summer season. There’s always the usual rounds of those due to regular usage issues but this year is appearing to be more problematic due to the various supply chain issues. Most energy companies simply don’t have the stockpile of replacement and spare parts as they’ve had and getting new stock is uncertain. So remember, it ain’t paranoia when its very plausible.
Below are some tips and tricks that we already had in place that made our short run far less frustrating. These of course are very short term fixes. List one are the easy peasy fixes we pretty much keep in place. The second list is far more involved and meant for the long term meaning most of those don’t happen overnight or magically appear by making a couple quick clicks on Amazon. We ourselves are buckling down to make most of them happen for us. And while it an seem to be a really daunting task and challenge, never forget that small steps lead to long impressive journeys and end results.
To note, the links provided take you to Amazon via our associate links so if you make a purchase, we get an appreciated kick back. We strongly suggest you shop around for the best prices for your budget but in full disclosure I’ve yet to find a better starting point than Amazon to begin the research.
Keep a jug of water in the freezer (or two) – Another trick picked up from the ice storm incident. There’s a lot of good reasons to do this one. Keeping one or two frozen jugs of water in your freezer will at first make it easier on your freezer in general. Like an old fashioned “ice box” the block of ice encased in plastic helps lower the load on your freezer. Also, in the event your pipes freeze up, its easy enough to allow them to thaw for fresh drinking water. Another great service this practical form of recycling provides is for those times when you may be gone for the day and return to find it not completely frozen thus indicating that a power outage occurred while you were away. I’ll admit that one’s a bit over anal retentive but a good tip nonetheless.
Manual kitchen tools – You never know how much you value your electric can opener until you can’t use it. Same can be said for many other tools found in the kitchen. Make an inventory of what you use on a regular basis and then find its manual alternative. Also, be sure to be mindful of plastic versus metal. Metal is certainly your preferred type in a power outage situation. Why? Because it doesn’t melt over an open fire if it happens to come down to that.
Flashlights – While most phones have a light of some sort it would be best to not tie up that tool when artificial light sources are affordable and plentiful. And of course, don’t forget the batteries.
Portable Radio – No longer the staple of everyone’s homes, it’s easy to forget how incredibly important this inexpensive form of communication is. While a traditional AM/FM receiver is good, to have one that also picks up the weather band is crucial. Let’s be real, the top 40 is far less important than the latest weather and emergency reports.
Disposable cups, utensils and containers. Washing dishes is not something anyone is a fan of that I’m aware of. Especially in an emergency situation.
START STUDYING – Knowledge is power and readily available. The internet is chock full of sites to teach you so much and you should totally spend some of your surfing time checking them out. 15 minutes ar day could really save your life. Support the content creators you find if they have a hard copy book available.
Those are just a small sliver of things that you can do right now with little to no cost and can help in the event of the “when” and not the “if” comes to your neighborhood. Full disclosure: We are still needing to get stocked up with the following list but we are working towards it.
Chickens. They come before the egg and so long as they’re laying you’re in good shape and in an extreme situation, they can be turned into chicken nuggets.
Learn to HUNT and FISH -I pray I don’t have to explain this.
Satellite Phones – This one is an absolute “end of the world” type of suggestion. The possibility of downed cell towers is plausible in the event of wide spread, major power outages. I personally do not own one and most likely won’t invest in one any time soon. Still, not a bad idea.
As of late in chatting with friends, I sure seem like a grumpy old man when it comes to the mainstream, pop culture front. I promise that I’m not though. Just a little bored with so much nostalgia based properties. Don’t get me wrong but seriously, instead of rehashing everything from the “glory days”, wouldn’t it be great to see that type of creativity in the mainstream again?
Or am I just a grumpy old man? I vote no but still I would really love to see stuff from the next Tim Burton or Dark Knight creator. What say you, dear reader? Is there something I’m missing that you’ve found that’s off the pop culture radar?
There’s something to be said about the incredible detail that can be found in modern action figure sculpting. Be they by hand or laser scanning, modern action figures in many cases are some impressive work of little doppelgänger art. But what about when they’re life size?
For this Mothers Day (Saturday actually. Beat the crowds and don’t be a slave to the Hallmark calendar kids!) Kaitlynn and I treated Our favorite momma (that’s Alicia for the uniformed) to a night at the museum. We’d been talking about it for years since our last trip back in 2010. A lot has changed at the attraction. One being the price.
Back then I had my “media credentials” so the cost was $0. Regular admission was actually around $19.95 a head and $10 for locals. That’s now $29.99 with a $1 discount for locals. Bit of a stinger but there have also been some changes to the way one can experience the attraction to add more value to the experience.
The biggest change was the removal of the tense-a-barriers. So now with the ropes gone you can get up close and personal with the life like figures. And that’s not an understatement. The wax models themselves have come along way since our visit back them. Some to the point of down right creepy in their realistic capturing of some the biggest faces in Hollywood and the music biz. Even if I have no clue as to who one in particular was. (Post Malone. I totally don’t know you.), an internet search later showed me how amazing they did. (I still have no clue who he is.)
Below you will find a run through of the complete cast of characters to be found entrapped in the walls behind the Mount Famousmore facade of the building. And to note, that is NOT King Kong on the top of the building. It just happens to resemble him. But just a little (wink, wink, nod,nod)
Enjoy the show!
Now, Go Play!
Thank you all for taking the time to visit the Toy Box and thank you even more for clicking through to check out the recommended links to products and pages I find cool and interesting. Every click counts and every purchase REALLY does.
Who doesn’t love a dark ride attraction? If that’s you, hate to hear that because we LOVE em! So much so, our closest one is a must see and do at Silver Dollar City in Branson, Mo. The only thing that comes a close second is the food found at the Mill Restaurant located to the right just past the park entrance. Great food, amazing service and worth every penny for all you care to eat Fried chicken, catfish, meatloaf, all the sides and a nice selection of desserts.
The stop at the Mill fueled us up well for the day of walking around this amusement and entertainment staple of the Ozarks. Along with the great food, the weather was perfect and the crowd was modest so getting around was very nice and not overrode with too many people elbow to elbow. A seriously great day for Alicia, Kaitlynn and myself. Especially since we discovered our favorite ride has had some TLC applied to since our last visit in 2019.
“The Flooded Mine” is a dark ride that takes you on a visual story of the “towns” work camp for those who didn’t do right by the towns agreed upon forms of civility. Thus these miscreants were sentenced to hard (and soggy) time in the mine.
It’s also a game as you can compete with your fellow flat bottom boat riders in shooting infrared targets all throughout the ride with your six shooter that has a realistic weight and feel, yet not so realistic cable that attaches it to the boat. Candidly though, they don’t work that well. That’s fine however as our trio is far more interested in the aesthetics of the ride than taking out the red and white bullseyes. The video below will show you why those looms are so wonderfully entertaining and fun!
There’s so many more memories and stories I could share about this long overdue visit. I may share more of those from this April 10, 2022 visit (primarily how proud Alicia and I are of Kaitlynn who really let herself live a little by experiencing so many new things) but for now I’ll wrap up with this…
The greatest experiences collected are the MEMORIES that overflow the Toy Box… yet there’s always room for more!
Recently I received a really cool gift from a buddy of mine; the ZLC Collectibles exclusive Rocky Balboa “training variant”. It’s a fun figure with sweat suit outfit, black beanie and shoes and athletic taped hands.
Overall it’s a nice and solid Mego action figure but the greatest part about it to me is the fact that it’s an exclusively produced figure. It’s nice to see a company that obviously loves the brand and product enough to go all in and working a deal like this. Real teeth in the game. As such I hope you consider ordering one today.
Another thing I really like about this figure is that it gave me the opportunity to put to some kind of use to an idea I turned into reality a couple months back.
One October morning I challenged myself to do something for the the sake of doing something fun and funny graphic wise. What popped into my head was a parody cereal box. Long story short, I have a real appreciation for the art that goes into cereal boxes. If you think about it, the makers put a lot of thought into adding value to that packaging. The old school days of a “prize inside” was great but it was also cool to be able to spend breakfast time reading the box.
With that top of mind I decided to apply my general love and inspiration that comes from the Mego style toy to this project. What you see here is the final culmination of that. Silly and kind of pointless in general, my efforts popped into a practical use when I got the Rocky. So now I share with you the pics as well as a version to print and make for yourself.
Right now you can finish your day just like the Italian Stallion starts his, with a big ole bowl of MegO’s cereal and imagination.
Now, go play!
Jim – 12/10/21
P.S. Here’s another fun little project I’m working on you might want to take a look at… we’ll, so long as you’re not scared of being “red-pilled” 😉